10 Questions with ... Chase Daniels
September 14, 2015
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- WMXQ/Jacksonville, FL (2001)
- WAPE/Jacksonville, FL (2004)
- WXXJ/Jacksonville, FL (2009)
- WSTR/Atlanta, GA (2009)
- WNTR & WZPL/Indianapolis, IN (2012)
1) What is it about 107.9 THE MIX that you feel really makes it cut through?
THE MIX is a unique station. I believe it is the "HOT AC" format of the Midwest. We found our niche. The same radio station that plays Journey "Don't Stop Believing" plays Magic "Rude." It might look weird on Mediabase. But when you listen for a little bit it makes sense. You can hear the sound type we're going after.
2) You also do afternoons on the legendary Top 40 in your cluster WZPL, Middays at KUDL in Sacramento, and nights at WMC in Memphis. How do you prepare for your airshift, and what are some of the differences between a Top 40 listener and the Hot AC audience?
I've come to realize WZPL's audience is very sarcastic. You can hear it when they call into the Smiley Morning Show, you can read it on Facebook, and you can meet them in person at live remotes. I use the same content on my Top 40 shows as I do my HOT AC shows. But I deliver it completely different.
With ZPL my "New York" attitude shows. With KUDL and WMC I'm more innocent/curious.
3) Who do you consider your radio mentors?
A) I'm lucky enough to work with one of them! (JR Ammons OM of Entercom Indianapolis). I started working with JR in 2007 at WAPE in Jacksonville, FL. He left and went to Atlanta ...I came to work in Jacksonville on a random Tuesday afternoon and my keycard didn't let me in? (It wasn't a malfunction ...) Soooo JR found a place for me in Atlanta. JR left Atlanta and went to Indianapolis. A few years later I joined him again.
Not only is JR one of the nicest and smartest guys in the business but he also knows how to work with several different personally types. He changes his behavior to get what he needs to get, done from that person. It's truly fascinating.
B) I was a little baby DJ on an 80s station in 2001. Mark Bell was APD/MD and took a chance on an annoying kid who kept calling into the radio station request lines trying to get hired doing ANYTHING. I worked my way up to overnight drive when Cat Thomas (OM of Cox Jacksonville at the time) heard me and years later moved me to Afternoon drive at WAPE.
Cat is one of those people, when he walks into a room he owns it. He could tell everyone the ship is sinking but we'll all be fine ... and everyone would see the water seeping up but we'd believe him. He's an outstanding coach and amazing leader.
4) How are you using social media to market your radio station?
Entercom has a Digital Audience Engagement director, Kim Reis, who has really helped THE MIX grow Likes. There's a formula that no one (including myself) wanted to do. It's a lot tedious stuff but it works.
Because THE MIX has grown in Likes, now more people see the brand on their news feed and (hopefully) that turns into appointment listening.
5) What do you view as the most important issue facing radio today?
The lack of research. Luckily, Entercom believes in it. I get what we need, but it's scary when you have to program based on your gut. Then you sit and wait ...and expect results. Think long term and invest in the brand. You'll get the results.
6) What makes the Indianapolis market unique? How does this compare to other markets you have worked at?
People 'round these parts are slow to adapt, very loyal and protective. I respect that. It's one of the reasons why I love this part of the country. But it can be tough to program. You have to be ready for a very slow reaction. You also must be patient. You might be doing the right thing ... it just takes time.
7) How do you feel terrestrial radio competes with the satellite radio, Pandora and Internet these days?
Compelling content wins. You can get music anywhere ... Even Apple knows that (Beats1.) Terrestrial will always have one leg up as long as it has compelling content.
8) What is the one truth that has held constant in your career?
You don't get hurt by what you don't play. One song can make or break what you've been working months if not years trying to achieve. Sometimes you only get one chance to make an impression. Stay inside the walls.
9) What do you do in your spare time?
My wife Deborah and I love exploring Indy and the surrounding areas. Every weekend we try and do something different even if it's just to grab lunch. I also like to go to the Apple Store way more than I care to admit.
10) Tell us what music we would find on your playlist right now and what is it you enjoy about that particular selection?
I have a lot of AAA music. I think that's my "smooth jazz ...?" I love singer songwriters with a guitar.